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Passion in Action: Jennifer Rotner

“I spend any and all available time with a camera in my hand.”

Jennifer Rotner, founder and CEO of Elite Editing and Elite Authors, lights up when she talks about her creative passion: photography. Besides being named a Most-Admired CEO by The Daily Record in 2018, as well as fulfilling her role as a sought-after speaker and expert on remote workplace culture, Rotner is a skilled and successful photographer. Her work has been featured in Baltimore magazine, the Baltimore Sun, the New York Post and AOL’s travel guides.

Women Who Lead asked her to share what she is passionate about outside of her typical job.

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Jennifer Rotner, founder and CEO of Elite Editing and Elite Authors, lights up when she talks about her creative passion: photography.

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Photo submitted by Jennifer Rotner.

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Photo submitted by Jennifer Rotner.

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Photo submitted by Jennifer Rotner.

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Photo submitted by Jennifer Rotner.

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Photo submitted by Jennifer Rotner.

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Photo submitted by Jennifer Rotner.

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Photo submitted by Jennifer Rotner.

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Photo submitted by Jennifer Rotner.

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Photo submitted by Jennifer Rotner.

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Photo submitted by Jennifer Rotner.

While I have loved running Elite for more than 10 years, I found that I still needed a creative outlet to scratch that artistic itch. Having always been passionate about photography, I decided to lean into the call of my camera in 2014. I set up shop with Jenny Lynn Photography and away I went! Since then, I’ve filled all my free moments photographing families and events, as well as doing editorial and product shoots for businesses and brands.

There’s something about capturing the perfect shot that connects me to a broader sense of beauty and aliveness. The best way I can describe it is to harken back to the 1950s, when single-use flashbulbs were popular. Imagine Marilyn Monroe throwing her head back with laughter and a photographer’s flash capturing the twinkle in her eye that was so organic to that moment. Or think of Pablo Picasso spontaneously reacting to a camera’s flash in the midst of painting a masterpiece. These single points of light forever connect the truth of one moment in time to everyone who comes after. What a fantastic way to tell a person’s story!

Before I decided to dive into professional photography, I was concerned it would somehow take away from Elite or be detrimental to my business. I was protective of my time, and I didn’t want to introduce any possible distractions to my already packed schedule. What I have come to realize, however, is my photography work benefits Elite.

When my artistic gas tank is filled, I’m free to travel longer distances for my Elite clients — not only because my creativity is ignited but also because I’m spending my time and resources where I need them, not chasing costly creative projects just to scratch that itch. From this place of balance I energetically help others find their voices through writing, editing, publishing and content-marketing solutions.

The most obvious place of crossover between my work as a CEO and my time spent behind a camera lens is that I get to help people tell their stories. Whether I’m working with a business leader to help her find her voice or quietly observing a father with his child, my role is to frame the moment. From big moments filled with progress and growth to small moments of connection, all of them tell a story.

Interested in sharing your passion? Contact Patrick Brannan at pbrannan@thedailyrecord.com.

Women Who Lead This article is featured in The Daily Record’s Women Who Lead: A Woman’s Guide To Business. The mission of the Women Who Lead (formerly Path to Excellence) magazine is to give our readers the opportunity to meet successful women of all ages, backgrounds and beliefs and learn how they define success. Read more from Women Who Lead.

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